There is something almost Shakespearean about “The Walking Dead’s” Season 2 penultimate episode, “Better Angels.” A father (Rick) kills a man, once his best friend, who he knows to be a threat to his family’s safety (Shane). Then, his son arrives and sees that his father has killed the man who he viewed as a second dad. Conflicted, he points his gun at his father, takes aim and… shoots Shane, his second father who had reanimated as a zombie while all of this was unfolding, and was about to chow down on Rick.
It just doesn’t get more tragic than that.
Or maybe it will since the show’s been renewed for a third season and what keeps us coming back for more is, well, tragedy. Also, we’ve read the comic books and know the depths to which Robert Kirkman — who also co-executive produces the show — will go to create ever more tragic scenarios.
So Shane is finally dead and with him much of the internal conflict that has driven the show up to this point. And, for us, the season pretty much ended on Sunday (March 11). But with one episode left, we expect more losses — especially since Shane’s death scene was cut with a shot of a zombie herd snapping to attention at the sound of a gun shot.
The finale, we predict, will be the farm’s complete infestation with zombies. More characters will die as the casting budget is cleared to make way for Season 3’s new hires. We haven’t got much hope for Hershel, his shell-shocked daughter, Patricia or the rest of the farm crew. Maggie, we expect will make it because Glen loves her and so does the camera.
But look for the core group — or what’s left of it — to survive for Season 3’s introduction to The Governor (David Morissey). We wouldn’t be surprised, though, to see T-Dog bite it (haha). He’s already utterly underused.
A few more random notes:
— We continue to dislike Lori intensely. She set Shane and Rick on a collision course that she knew would end up with one or the other dead. And we get the feeling she’s not counting on Rick being the one to hobble back to the farm.
— Yes, Shane was apparently infected all along. Apparently he got scratched or bit when he and Otis went to the high school early on in the season and has been carrying the virus ever since. But it seems that the infection alone isn’t enough to doom one to a zombie fate. You have to die first.
— Or do you? Daryl wasn’t able to find any signs of bites or scratches on Randall, yet he too came back as a zombie after Shane broke his neck. Had he been previously infected or — as implied in the comic books — is everyone already infected and condemned to an afterlife as a walker?
— When Shane was transitioning into a zombie, we saw what he was seeing — flashes of ugly nasty walkers. Really? Wouldn’t someone turning into a single-minded flesh eating machine be more likely to see the object of its desire — blood, guts, lunch?
What did you think of Season 2’s second to last episode? Weigh in below.